The University of Rochester Medical Center and Vaccinex, Inc. announced today the award of a key U.S. patent for a technology platform that can assist researchers in finding new treatments for cancer and other diseases. While the technology has many applications, one promising use is for the identification of certain proteins, called monoclonal antibodies, that are capable of seeking out and destroying harmful cells. Several companies have recently developed monoclonal antibodies as treatments for cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and other conditions. Under an exclusive, worldwide license from the University of Rochester, Vaccinex is using the patented technology to discover and develop new monoclonal antibody therapies.
The technology was developed by Maurice Zauderer, Ph.D., while he was a faculty member and researcher at the James P. Wilmot Cancer Center at the University of Rochester. Zauderer co-founded Vaccinex in 1997 and left the University in 1999 to serve full-time as the company’s president and chief executive officer. The company, headquartered on Mt. Hope Avenue in Rochester, currently employs more than 35 people, most of them scientists and technicians.
“This patent underscores the uniqueness of this technology, which gives Vaccinex important advantages over our competitors in the area of therapeutic antibodies,” said Zauderer. “Vaccinex is leveraging this proprietary technology to assist established leaders in the antibody market, delivering near-term revenues as we build our own pipeline of antibody therapies.”
According to Morgan Stanley, the market for antibody therapies is estimated at $3 billion in 2003 and is projected to reach $10 billion by 2010. For additional information about Vaccinex, please visit the company's website at www.vaccinex.com.